As an old school fan of pro wrestling, I’ve always found a guilty pleasure in the WWE video games.
Sure they’re great multiplayer titles that offer enough freedom and modes for anyone to lose hours to, but in the end they are games meant for the fans.
To that end though, there have always been some nagging problems and missing features that have kept the games from being the ultimate fan service to the faithful of that most bizarre sports entertainment hybrid. While there are a few larger issues that could definitely be improved (*cough* for the love of God better A.I. *cough*), these are five smaller things I’d love to see in the recently announced WWE 2K14 and beyond.
The best thing about the WWE games is their ability to allow you to customize just about anything to an absolutely insane amount of detail. Want a 500 lb woman with a mullet to come out to “Freebird” while wearing a custom championship belt to defend at your own custom PPV? You can do that.
However one aspect of the game, submission moves, have always gotten the shaft. Sure, it’d be great if they were more dynamic and destructive than they are now, but realistically I’d just love the option to create my own maneuvers, much like you can create finishers. It would require a little more “outside the box” programing considering you’d have to play around with ragdoll physics to make it work, but it’s the lack of those kind of dynamic options that have made these games feel stale recently.
Submissions may not be a huge part of wrestling, but they are there and the next WWE game would do well to cater more towards fans of them.
4. Smoother Chain Moves
Chain wrestling is a term used in pro-wrestling to specify wrestlers who are able to flow from one maneuver to another without really much pause between them. While popular amongst high-fliers, more and more wrestlers have incorporated this exciting style into their matches.
The WWE games have always been lacking in this department however. It used to be excusable as the technology of the time only permitted for the “Grapple, do a move. Grapple, do a move” system, but we’re well beyond that tech now, and are still subject to the same plodding style. It would be great if there was more situation awareness to the controls, so you wouldn’t have to experience superfluous, and often janky, animations when stringing together simple moves.
It would admittedly take a complete overhaul to fix this entirely, but it would be nice if there was more of an element of this in the next title.
3. Better Commentary
For years, wrestling games had no audio commentary, so when the feature was finally incorporated, most were so grateful they excused the repetitive and dull nature of it.
Yet, much like animation, here we are years later and still subject to the same repetitive and dull commentary. It’s bad enough when you hear the same lines over and over, but when you play the new games annually, you rarely hear any lines not used in previous installments. There is a level of that in all sports games, but I’ve never heard one as bad as the WWE games, and it really takes you out of the environment, or forces you to turn the commentary off entirely.
While dynamic commentary and more realistic banter would be great, really all anyone is asking here is for some fresh dialogue in each new installment, and some less mechanical “one take” readings.
2. A More Historic Roster
Along with its heavy customization options, the thing fans have appreciated most about the WWE games are the comprehensive rosters, which feature not just a host of modern day superstars, but legends of the past as well.
One thing that’s always bugged me though is that the legends rarely go beyond WWE stars of the past, and even then don’t often go past the Hulk Hogan era.
Granted this may be a licensing issue, but considering the WWE basically owns the rights to the majority of wrestling history, its time the roster reflects lesser celebrated stars of times gone past from other organizations. Sure, not all fans may jump for joy at the chance to play as, say, Buddy Rodgers, but no one will complain about more wrestlers on the roster, and the old-school fans would love it.
1. WAR GAMES!!!!!
The War Games match sees two rings joined surrounded by a large cage. Two teams of 4-5 enter one at a time at set intervals until all men are in the ring. From there, the first man to make another from the opposing team quit or submit wins it for his team.
It’s the most unique and incredible match type ever devised for pro wrestling, and has, to my knowledge, never been in a video game. While a WCW creation, considering that WWE owns their rights now, and even have a War Games DVD on the way this year, now would be the perfect time for the most wanted of all match types to finally make its debut.
Someone please…make this happen.
Posted in: Editorial
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